The poetry of Bet Washbrooke
and her mother, Betty Mates

Betty Mates' Collections

From an early age I fell under the spell of Mum's expertise with words, rhymes and rhythms. Her lullabies were her own words set to her own music. In later years I was enthused by her love of poetry and started to write my own. Even today, reading and writing poetry are two of my greatest pleasures.

Her poems are in turn sensitive, humorous, lively and reflective. She draws from her experiences, love of nature and her deep faith. Stepping Stones charts her own journey through and beyond the loss of her soul mate, William Henry. Other poems range from the lyrical, as in Hackney Marshes, to the light-hearted Billy Goat Gruff.

A book of Mum's complete works, "Dears", can be downloaded from her poetry page.


Bet Washbrooke's Poems

When Dave, my soul mate for 50 years, asked me what I'd like for my 70th birthday I was stumped for a while. Then, remembering the book of my Mum's lovely poetry he had compiled so fittingly for her 89th birthday in 2010, I knew exactly what I'd like. A book of my poems, "Sandhogs", came into being. The poems from Sandhogs are all included on this website.

The poems span 54 years, from a teenage holiday romance in Austria to my thoughts last December. During the interim, there were long gaps when I wrote nothing. In contrast, a year at Meadowgate Special School provided a unique experience which inspired a raft of poems.

Both Christianity and naturism have been important parts of my life, as reflected in the following pages. Christianity still is; the opportunity to enjoy naturism has evaded us for some time but we live in hope.

Many of my poems were inspired by individuals but you won't find any dedicated to my family, except in memoriam. This isn't because they aren't loved and treasured; rather that any poetry about them is too personal to share.

My heartfelt thanks and love to Dave, who made my birthday wish come true.

A book of Bet's works to date, "Sandhogs", can be downloaded from her poetry page.

The poets (poetesses?): Betty Mates and her daughter, Bet Washbrooke.